Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Tracing the Morenz-Geoffrion Lineage

 NHL history was made on February 26, 2011 when Blake Geoffrion made his NHL debut for the Nashville Predators. Yes, he was the first Tennessee native to play in the league – but he was also the NHL’s first fourth generation player. Blake also set a new record on March 1, 2011 by scoring a goal - becoming the first fourth generation NHL player to score a goal in the league. Lets take a closer look at his family tree:

Blake "Little Boom" Geoffrion
Blake Geoffrion is a former Hobey Baker Award winner who played college puck for the University of Wisconsin. He had some good seasons for them, but his best came in 2009-2010 when he put up 50 points in 40 games, including 28 goals. Blake then signed with the Milwaukee Admirals of the AHL, the Nashville Predators minor league affiliate. Blake is rated a 6.5C on HockeysFuture and has been scouted as an excellent two-way forward that combines of size, power and energy who thrives on the physical side of the game and can often be found delivering some very solid checks.

Danny "Bust Bust" Geoffrion
Blake’s father, Dan Geoffrion, is a former 8th overall draft pick from the 1978 NHL Amateur Draft. After some stellar seasons for the Cornwall Royals of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League, Dan was drafted by the Montreal Canadiens. Opting to jump to the World Hockey Association before the NHL, Dan joined the Quebec Nordiques before they merged into the NHL. Dan’s junior success did not carry onto the NHL, as he went from 143 points in 71 games in his last Cornwall season to 111 career NHL games with 52 points. Dan moved to Nashville after retirement for work, and helped grow minor hockey in Tennessee, where his son Blake was born.

Boom Boom had a great clapper
Dan’s father, Bernie “Boom Boom” Geoffrion, is one of the most famous hockey players of all time. Known for his hard shot and feisty temperament, Bernie earned the nickname “Boom Boom” – some even claim he invented and perfected the slapshot. Bernie used his shot to his advantage, becoming the 2nd NHL player to reach the 50 goal mark for a single season in 1960-61. Overall, Bernie played 16 seasons in the NHL and racked up 822 points through 883 games. Boom Boom would win 6 Stanley Cups with the Montreal Canadiens and was rightfully inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1972. Over 30 years later, the Canadiens retired his #5 on March 11, 2006 - the same day he passed away from stomach cancer.

Bernie’s wife, Marlene, was the daughter of Montreal Canadiens great Howie Morenz. Morenz played 14 seasons in the NHL, the majority with the Montreal Canadiens with whom he won 3 Stanley Cups. Considered one of the first stars of the NHL - he won the league MVP award three times. Morenz scored 467 points through 550 NHL games, earning him a Hockey Hall of Fame induction in 1945 amongst the first twelve inductees. Morenz played his last game on January 28, 1937 when his leg was fractured in 4 places after catching his skate in the boards and having another player fall on it with full force. Morenz was unable to move from his hospital bed, and his condition worsened with depression and a nervous breakdown. After complaining of chest pains which doctors attributed to a heart attack, Morenz collapsed and passed away at the age of 34 on March 8, 1937.

Morenz’s funeral was held the Montreal Forum where 50,000 people passed through to pay their respects, and the Canadiens also honoured Morenz by retiring his #7 - the first time the team honoured a player in that fashion. Morenz's number was also lowered halfway when Bernie Geoffrion's number was raised, and the two numbers were raised together to honour the special link between the Morenz and Geoffrion families.


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13 comments:

  1. so if trends continue.... Blake is the biggest Bust?

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  2. I remember watching that jersey retirement for Bernie Geoffrion... very emotional, not a dry eye in the arena when they lowered Morenz's down to rise with Boom Boom's... two great Canadiens

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  3. I wish my dad was better at hockey..lol

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  4. When are you boys going to do a post on the Sutters?

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  5. I didn't know that is how Howie Morenz died.That is some sad shit.

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  6. Quite the name to live up to!

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  7. Bust Bust Geoffion!NICE!

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  8. Boom.... Bust.... my prediction is Blake becomes the Echo

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  9. I can't believe Montreal fans booed Bernie Geoffrion when he beat Maurice Richard in the scoring race. Richard was an idiot who attacked a ref! MONTREAL FANS ARE STUPID!

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  10. as a Montreal fan, I have to agree with you. What was he supposed to do? not score?

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  11. Montreal fans always complain about their stars, don't truly appreciate what they have

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  12. they booed Lafleur, jeered Roy, booed Price... ungrateful

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  13. I think Blake is a career 3rd liner

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